Victor Valley College Tropical Research Initiative
Herpetofauna of Timor-Leste
Phase VIII

The logo of the Victor Valley College, Tropical Research Initiative, Timor-Leste Reptile and Amphibian Survey

June 18th to July 2nd 2013
with side trips to Kuala Lumpur, Bali, Lombok, Java & Singapore

Map of Timor-Leste
(click to enlarge and view Phase VI fieldwork locations)


The Victor Valley College Tropical Research Initiative comprises the first ever intensive herpetofauna survey of Timor-Leste, the fifth youngest country in the world and Asia's newest country (at the the time of writing). For more information on the background to this project visit the Phase I home page.

Before we embarked on the expedition proper there was the matter of getting all the personnel and equipment out to Southeast Asia, which included several Flights that do not always go as planned. Before arriving in Timor-Leste, Hinrich as arranged biological and cultural excursions in Kuala Lumpur, and the Indonesian islands of Bali and Lombok, and after Phase VIII was completed we would visit Bogor, Java to do some museum work and then Singapore to relax before the team flew back to USA and Germany. I would be continuing to Papua New Guinea for further fieldwork.

Phase VII took place during June and July 2013 and included three members of earlier phases. The entire team numbered 11. A list of participants for Phase VIII follows:

Hinrich Kaiser (Instructor and Expedition Leader - Victor Valley College, Victorville, USA)
Mark O'Shea (Instructor and Deputy Leader - University of Wolverhampton & WMSP, UK)
Sven Mecke (Instructor and Skink Specialist - University of Marburg , Germany)

Victor Valley College, California students:
Julia Pozo
Claudia Rivas

James Madison University, Virginia students:
Kevin Burns
Jay Paris

University of Marburg, Germany students:
Britta Döring
Franziska Wagner

Universidade Nacional do Timor-Leste graduates (The Jets):
Agivedo Ribeiro (Laca)
Paulo Pinto


At the Timor-Leste Ministry of Foreign Affairs,
with Deputy Foreign Minister Constancio Pinto (centre)
The VVC Phase VIII team (L-R):
Claudia Rivas, Sven Mecke, Jay Paris, Julia Pozo, Franziska Wagner,
Hinrich Kaiser, Kevin Burns, Britta Döring, Agivedo Ribeiro, Mark O'Shea.
Paulo Pinto was absent from the photograph.

click to enlarge

The locations in Timor-Leste visited during Phase VIII in 2013 are listed below.

During the project we also maintained a blog in the Expedition Field Notes section of this website.

1. Dili District:
a) Dili, Dili District

2. Aileu District:
a) Comoro River, Aileu District

1. Dili District:
b) Cristo Rei, Dili District
c) Metinaro mangrove swamp, Dili District
d) Dili, Dili District

3. Lautém District:
a) Dili to Com, Lautém District
b) Com, LautémDistrict
c) Raça,Lautém District
d) East of Com,Lautém District

1. Dili District:
e) Com to Dili, Dili District

2. Aileu District:
b) Comoro River, Aileu District

4. Liquiça District:
a) Lake Maubara, Liquiça District

5. Ermera District:
a) Dili to Meleotegi River, Ermera District
b) Meleotegi River, Ermera District

1. Dili District:
f) Dili, Dili District

Expedition Results - a full life-list for the 2013 expedition to Timor-Leste.